Making a “mezze” of things…..

I recently had a culinary epiphany – BLACK TAHINI.

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Just make up your hummus as normal, using regular tahini, and then mix through a swirl of this stuff….

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It’s all natural, made from black sesame seeds. I topped mine off with some nice olive oil, fresh lemon juice, and a sprinkling of black sesame seeds.

It tastes fantastic, and looks (in my opinion) incredible.

I liked it so much that I had to make it the centrepiece of a mezze….

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On the plates we have harissa griddled aubergine, zaatar griddled courgette (from the garden). salad and sprouts (in a light vinaigrette) . Left to right – patatas bravas, stuffed vineleaves/dolmades (cheated – they’re from a tin!), garlic and pimenton sausage and beans, and of course the hummus.

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I roasted cubed potatoes in a mix of sweet pimenton, cayenne pepper, black pepper and coconut sugar, and then baked them in a tomato, garlic and chilli sauce….

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I opened a tin of dolmades. The hard bit was not eating them all as I cooked….

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A pack of WHEATY MERGUEZ sausages, a pack of frozen edamame beans, fried up in olive oil with lots of smoked paprika and garlic – my take on the classic chorizo and fava dish.

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The aubergine was marinaded in HARRY BRAND HARISSA, lemon juice and olive oil. Then griddled, and then baked until it was “melt-in-the-mouth”. The courgette was marinaded in lemon juice, olive oil, and ZAYTOUN PALESTINIAN ZA’ATAR, then griddled, and baked the same as the aubergine.

I’m pretty sure this meal had more garlic per head than anything I’ve prepared before (at least 5 or 6 bulbs went into this meal), so i’m pretty sure we’re safe from vampires for the mean time.

 

 

Indian-style kebab….ish

As I’m sure you’re aware, I’m a HUGE fan of PRASHAD, and their’s are some of the few cookery books I actually own.

 

There’s a fantastic recipe for Methi Bhaji Bataka (basically fenugreek potatoes) in their PRASHAD AT HOME book, which I’ve been meaning to turn into a wrap for ages…. so here it is….

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Yeah, I got a bit carried away with the fillings…

 

So let’s start at the bottom…

Simple flatbreads – seeded wholemeal flour, sunflower oil, salt and water – mixed, kneaded, rolled out and cooked fast and hot.

Salad – y’know, leaves and stuff?

Curried spinach – turmeric, asafoetida, black pepper, black mustard, cardomom, fresh chillies, fresh ginger, fresh garlic – fry them all up, wilt down the spinach. Green, spicy, delicious.

Methi Bhaji Bataka – the recipe’s in the book – it’s only £25, thank me later.

 

Achari Tofu – Firm Tofu, strained and marinaded in lemon juice, dried mint, salt and soy sauce. Coated with Achari Spice Blend (available from most Continental superstores – it’s basically chilli, black salt, mango powder, asafoetida and a few other bits and bobs), baked until slightly crispy. YUM.

Coriander Chutney – fresh coriander, fresh chillies, fresh garlic, lemon juice, salt. Blitz, then stir through your vegan yoghurt of choice. This time it was almond milk yoghurt. I hadn’t tried this one before – usually I go for COYO’S fantastic coconut based yoghurt.

Topped off with a garnish of fresh coriander and red chillies.

I don’t often like to “blow my own trumpet”… but this was a bit special.

17 hours later and I’m still stuffed!